NEWS: Changes to Form 990-N filing for small exempt organizations

The IRS has announced that, effective February 29, 2016, exempt organizations that required to file Form 990-N will do so through the IRS website – IRS.gov . This form can only be filed online – mailing a paper alternative is not an option.  Until now, Form-990 was filed using a website operated by the Urban Institute. That site will remain active until the new site goes live on February 29.

Who’s affected by this change?

This change only affects small exempt organizations that are required to file Form 990-N annually. An exempt organization is required to file Form 990-N if it (a) usually receive less than $50,000 per year in donations and revenue and (b) is not specifically required to file Form 990 or Form 990-EZ .

Keep track of your filing deadlines!

The deadline for filing varies my organizations. It is defined as “the 15th day of the 5th month after the close of your tax year.” For organizations ending their tax year on December 31st, this means your deadline is May 15 of the following year.  If your organization’s deadline happens to fall on February 28 or earlier, you will continue to file this year’s Form 990-N electronically using the current site.

Completing the Form 990-N

Several important changes were made to exemption organization filing requirements in 2012.  This was after 275,000 organizations lost their exempt status for failing to file for three or more years. Fortunately for smaller organizations, the current filing requirements are rather simple. In addition to the ease of filing online, these organizations only need to supply eight pieces of simple information:

  1. Employer identification number (EIN), also known as a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN)
  2. Tax year
  3. Legal name and mailing address
  4. Any other names the organization uses
  5. Name and address of a principal officer
  6. Web site address if the organization has one
  7. Confirmation that the organization’s annual gross receipts are $50,000 or less
  8. If applicable, a statement that the organization has terminated or is terminating (going out of business)

If you have any questions about your organization’s current filing requirements or to discuss reinstatement options if your exempt status was revoked, contact Zak Shusterman directly.

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